Beyond robins: aerodynamic analyses of animal flight.
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: Journal of the Royal Society, Interface
Förlag: Royal Society
Recent progress in studies of animal flight mechanics is reviewed. A range of birds, and now bats, has been studied in wind tunnel facilities, revealing an array of wake patterns caused by the beating wings and also by the drag on the body. Nevertheless, the quantitative analysis of these complex wake structures shows a degree of similarity among all the different wake patterns and a close agreement with standard quasi-steady aerodynamic models and predictions. At the same time, new data on the flow over a bat wing in mid-downstroke show that, at least in this case, such simplifications cannot be useful in describing in detail either the wing properties or control prospects. The reasons for these apparently divergent results are discussed and prospects for future advances are considered.
- Biology and Life Sciences
- flow visualization
- animal flight
- ISSN: 1742-5689